Wednesday, 13 September 2017

1 in 3 Egyptians has access to banking system — that’s 2-3x what conventional wisdom previously held


What We’re Tracking Today

It’s a very busy day, folks, largely on the international affairs front: Topping the list of things we’re tracking today will be the Alliance for Financial Inclusion’s ninth annual Global Policy Forum in Sharm El Sheikh, which we’ll be attending. This year’s event, the largest ever, will see international officials and central bank governors from 95 countries taking part along with leading local finance institutions. President Abdel Fattah El Sisi, Prime Minister Sherif Ismail, and CBE Governor Tarek Amer will all be attending.

The theme sounds like the usual development pabulum (“Exploring Diversity, Promoting Inclusion”), but look for it to have a long-term impact on the nation’s banking sector: The central bank has made financial inclusion its new refrain going forward, and has been rolling out policies designed to enhance access to the system.

Already, we know that more Egyptians than previously thought have access to the banking system — about one in three, not the one in 10 (or so) most of us thought was the case. We have more on that in Speed Round, below.

The gathering is expected to see the announcement of the Sharm El Sheikh Accord on financial inclusion and climate change, said AFI Executive Director Alfred Hannig. An Arab region strategy that also address refugees and migrants is also expected to be announced. Amer spoke yesterday on the state of financial inclusion and the economy on the whole yesterday (the highlights of which are covered in the Speed Round). You can catch the forum’s agenda here (pdf).

Meanwhile, seven banks will meet with more than 40 fund managers today at the Pharos Holding “Egypt Banking Day” event.

Prime Minister Sherif Ismail met with Vice President of the European Investment Bank (EIB) Dario Scannapieco to discuss strengthening ties with the bank, according to a cabinet statement. Ismail pointed out the aggressive set of reforms Egypt has undertaken to improve the environment for investments and economic growth. The talks came ahead of today’s EIB MED conference,where it is expected that the EIB will ink agreements for a loan of EUR 172 mn for wastewater treatment projects.

Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry is in London today for a six-party Arab League ministerial meeting on the situation in Libya. “The meeting will tackle coordinating regional and international efforts to end the division in Libya as well as to achieve national reconciliation … Foreign ministers of the United States, Britain, France, Italy, the United Arab Emirates, in addition to UN Secretary General’s special envoy for Libya Ghassan Salama, will take part.” Ministry Spokesperson Ahmed Abu Zeid says, according to Xinhua. Shoukry met yesterday with his Libyan, Emirati, and Jordanian counterparts to discuss their countries’ visions on the crisis and other regional issues.

Italy’s Foreign Minister Angelino Alfano is set to meet with Shoukry tomorrow on the sidelines of the meeting, ANSAmed reports. “Alfano will reportedly discuss with his Egyptian counterpart, among other things, the recent disappearance of Ibrahim Metwaly, the lawyer representing the family of Giulio Regeni, the Italian student tortured and murdered in Egypt last year.” This comes as new Italian ambassador Giampaolo Cantini will present his credentials to the Foreign Ministry today, according to Al Shorouk. He will also meet President Abdel Fattah El Sisi.

Israel names Egypt in travel warning: Meanwhile, Israeli counter-terrorism officials have reportedly issued a travel warning advising citizens to steer clear of certain destinations, including Egypt, Jordan and Turkey, if they plan to travel abroad during upcoming Jewish holidays, i24News reports. The Israeli National Security Council’s Counterterrorism Bureau has Sinai on a “Level 1” warning, the highest designation, and it is recommended that Israelis avoid all travel to the area due to the “very high concrete threat, according to JPost. The bureau also warned Israelis against travelling to western and northern European countries.

Brazilian Foreign Minister Aloysio Nunes arrived yesterday with a high-level delegation for bilateral talks. The diplomat is going to meet with a number of officials to discuss economic cooperation, investment and trade, renewable energy, tourism and regional as well as international geopolitical concerns, according to AMAY.

What We’re Tracking This Week

The Council of State should be reviewing the Investment Act’s executive regulations thisweek and concluding its work before the month is over.

The Egyptian-Sudanese-Ethiopian committee on the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Damconvenes Thursday in Atbara to discuss the project’s environmental impact report.

On The Horizon

Those wishing to retake possession of land that was seized by the government forallegedly being illegally occupied have until the end of the month to submit their applications and comply with government regulations, Local Development Minister Hisham El Sherif tells Al Borsa. This is of course after the land is paid for, of course.

We’re expecting 4G services to roll out this month now that the national regulator and operators have concluded their technical tests.

Telecom Egypt should also be launching its new mobile network next week, with the company saying it plans to stick to the deadline whether it reaches an agreement with other MNOs or not. We won’t hold our breaths.

Enterprise+: Last Night’s Talk Shows

The highlight of the night was an interview with Gen. Joseph Votel, commander of USCentral Command, on Masaa DMC. It was otherwise a mixed bag of nuts last night, with topics ranging from the energy sector to institutional corruption. Surprisingly absent: Coverage of the AFI financial inclusion summit in Sharm being co-hosted by the central bank, which the local print media has been fixating on all week.

The resumption of Bright Star was not only significant to US-Egypt relations, but for theregion as a whole, Votel told host Osama Kamal (watch, runtime 4:13). “The US knows it can’t fight terrorism alone, and that they can depend on partners,” he said. “It is very important to have a mechanism of sharing information to make sure that Egypt has the best understanding of what is happening,” he added. Votel gave a brief rundown on the war games, saying they include both staff exercises and live-fire exercises on the ground (watch, runtime 5:34).

Votel only briefly touched on the recent tension between the two countries after an aid cut that many believe was not about human rights, but designed to pressure Egypt to break ties with North Korea. “There certainly going to be some disagreements, but we can work through these disagreements. Bright Star is an example; we stopped it eight years ago, but now it is back because we recognized the importance of it,” he said (watch, runtime 5:41).

All in all, it was nice to see a senior US official go on television and speak directly to Egyptians and strike a positive note, even if it was someone who wears fatigues for a living and not a dip.

Kamal wasn’t done yet, going on to interview Oil Minister Tarek El Molla, who discussed the notion (which we reported yesterday) to have Aramco refine Saudi oil in Egypt. El Molla says the talks include having Aramco diversify the oil products shipped through the SUMED pipeline to include fuel oil and butane gas, as well as crude oil. The minister noted that, while Aramco owns 15% of SUMED’s shares, it accounts for 55% of its turnover (watch, runtime 9:38).

Over on Hona Al Asema, Food Industries Holding Company head Alaa Fahmy dismissedthe notion of private-sector investment in public companies, telling host Lamees Al Hadidi that it would be unnecessary. We all miss the 1970s, don’t we, Alaa? He then droned on about some tuna factory reopening (watch, runtime 6:47), making us wonder: Why do even educated journalists so unquestioningly fawn over functionaries from the black holes that are state-owned enterprises?

Infinitely more relevant: Lamees resumed her weekly women-focused segment, HonaAl-Settat, which centered on the issue of gender parity in inheritance (watch, runtime 4:45).

Over on Kol Youm, Amr Adib bellowed and gesticulated about government corruption and the Administrative Control Authority’s consistent efforts to arrest officials involved in graft, which he says send a clear message that the state is committed to fighting corruption (watch, runtime 24:31).

Yahduth fi Masr’s Sherif Amer remained preoccupied with the terror attacks in NorthSinai earlier this week, for which the head of the National Center for Security Studies Khaled Okasha pointed the finger of blame at Qatar.

Speed Round

Speed Round is presented in association with

The CBE will be ready to send the amended Central Bank and Banking Act to the “relevant authorities for approval” in a month after its board finishes discussions on the legislation, Governor Tarek Amer said yesterday. “The amendments rest on the principles of good governance and aim to give the CBE better tools to help regulate the economy and the banking sector,” said Amer. He added that delegations from the CBE had been sent to places such the UK to examine regulatory best practices and legislation in drafting the amendments. Amer struck a sharp tone, saying he would not kowtow to pressure on the amendments, but said he did welcome diverging opinions. The CBE has received notes and suggestions from the Federation of Egyptian Banks, which had objected to a number of proposed amendments, including those on setting term limits for bank managing directors and suggesting that banks kick in 5% of their bottom lines annually for an industry development fund.

IPO of state banks will follow Enppi: Amer, speaking at the Alliance for Financial Inclusion’s (AFI) ninth annual Global Policy Forum in Sharm El Sheikh, which the CBE is hosting, also revealed that the central bank is awaiting the results of Enppi’s listing of 24% of its shares in 4Q2017 before moving forward with the IPO of state-owned banks — the first of which will be Banque du Caire.

As for the sale of United Bank, Amer said the institution, which is now reportedly profitable, is currently being restructured ahead of a sale to a strategic investor.

And speaking of state-owned banks, Prime Minister Sherif Ismail signed off on the shakeup of state-owned bank managing directors, including the National Bank of Egypt, Banque Misr, Banque du Caire, Amer said. The shakeup was at one time said to be behind the delayed listing of Banque du Caire.

And as for the main event: More Egyptians than previously thought have access to a bank account. That news came as Amer discussed Egypt’s strategy and initiatives on financial inclusion at the press conference we attended yesterday. He was joined AFI Executive Director Alfred Hannig, and by Tukiya Kankasa-Mabula, chair of the AFI Gender and Women’s Financial Inclusion Committee and Deputy Governor of the Bank of Zambia. Key takeaways:

  • 32% of Egypt’s adults are banked, with total deposits growing EGP 200 bn. Amer signalled that we should be on the lookout for new legislation and policies to drive inclusion. The 32% inclusion rate is important — it’s substantially higher than the “one in 10” number usually bandied about, and we understand the CBE is taking steps to come up with an even more accurate estimate of total participation in the banking sector.
  • The National Payments Council has tasked the Finance Ministry to conduct a sweeping survey of the informal economy, which Amer described as one of the biggest obstacles to financial inclusion.
  • The CBE is working with the AFI on a number of policies which will be announced during the Forum. These will likely be the Sharm El Sheikh Accord on financial inclusion and the Financial Inclusion in the Arab Region Initiative (FIARI) regional policy.
  • These strategies will work hand in hand with current CBE policies, including the CBE Microfinance initiative, which aims to provide EGP 30 bn in financing to around 10 mn beneficiaries, and the SME initiative, which is making some EGP 19 bn in subsidized financing available to small businesses.

Bad news for our energy hub ambitions: Cyprus’ Zohr neighbor is a dud: The Onisiforos well in Cypriot block 11 does not contain enough gas to make it commercially viable as a standalone project as it has less than 0.5 tcf of gas, Energy Minister Yiorgos Lakkotrypis said, according to Cyprus Mail. The block, which is adjacent to Egypt’s Zohr, is being explored by Eni and Total. Lakkotrypis saw a silver lining in the results, saying they “are encouraging, in the sense that they confirm the existence of natural gas and a carbonate reservoir within Cyprus’ EEZ, similar to the one discovered in Egypt’s Zohr field.”

Elsewedy signs EUR 44 mn meter supply contract in Togo: Elsewedy Electric announced that subsidiary Elsewedy Power has signed a EUR 44 mn contract with Compagnie Energie Electrique du Togo to supply it with 300k prepaid meters, according to a bourse disclosure. The contract is to be implemented over a period of Nine months, starting 4Q2017.

M&A WATCH- Tawassol for Public Relations acquired 100% of television network Al Hayat in a EGP 1.4 bn transaction, Al Mal reports. Tawassol is owned by security company Falcon Group. Al Hayat’s debts surpassed EGP 1 bn during the past period, and held on to only EGP 700k out of EGP 91 mn in advertisement revenues during Ramadan, with the remainder being directed towards debt services, network owner Al Sayed Al Badawi said, according to the newspaper. The television broadcaster’s financial troubles came to the fore in July, when the Egyptian Media Production City decided to cut off services provided to the network due to the latter’s failure to make good on EGP 20 mn in overdue payments. CI Capital was financial advisor on the transaction.

We’re going to grow more corn next year: The Agriculture Ministry announced its intention to increase the total farming area devoted to corn nationwide by two thirds in FY2018-19 to help reduce the country’s reliance on imports, Reuters reports. It targets increasing the corn cultivation area by 800k feddans to 2 mn feddans by the end of FY2018-19. The ministry has already begun paying farmers double compared to last year for corn purchases, with the expectation that it will help boost the total area cultivated. The newswire says Egypt imports 8.5 mn tonnes of corn annually at a cost of c. USD 1.6 bn.

Arigato, Nippon: Japan has pledged JPY 18.6 bn (USD 170 mn) in yen-denominated loans to Egypt to build facilities to implement Japanese-style education, according to Japan Times. This followed the meeting between Japan’s Foreign Minister Taro Kono and President Abdel Fattah El Sisi at which Kono also pledged JPY 1 bn to support the Japan-backed Egypt-Japan University of Science and Technology. Kono also expressed support for Egypt’s effort to restart Middle East peace talks, expressed Tokyo’s intention to cooperate with Cairo in the efforts to restart the peace talks, and said Japan will actively contribute to regional peace and stability, according to an Ittihadiya statement (pdf).

Alwaleed to buy half Credit Agricole’s stake in Banque Saudi Fransi at a discount:Saudi businessman Alwaleed bin Talal’s Kingdom Holding Company is buying 16.2% of Banque Saudi Fransi from Credit Agricole Saudi Arabia, “at a discount,” in a USD 1.54 bn transaction, Bloomberg reported yesterday. The transaction sets Banque Saudi Fransi’s share price at SAR 29.5, 11% lower than Monday’s closing price. Credit Agricole had reportedly tried to sell its full 31% stake in the bank back in March and it’s not alone. “International banks are grappling with how to approach the Middle East’s biggest economy, which blocks foreign control of local lenders,” the news website notes. Bloomberg BusinessWeek uses the transaction to note that while changes in KSA’s economy have global investment bankers lining up for their chance to sup at the trough of Gulfie fees, “those taking on actual credit risk in the local economy are less enthralled” — and are heading for the exits.

OPEC could be prolonging oil production cuts that are set to expire in March 2018 “well into the second half of next year in effort to boost prices,” sources tell Bloomberg. “An extension of that duration would be needed under the worst-case scenario for the oil market that OPEC ministers are now contemplating,” the sources add, explaining that the actual duration of extension, which will be determined at OPEC and allies’ November meeting, will depend on a number of variables, including levels of global demand, level of compliance with promised production cuts, output recovery in Libya and Nigeria, and the US’ shale gas supply.

Iraqi Kurdistan independence referendum has regional powers on edge: The Arab League has passed a resolution declaring that a planned 25 September referendum by the Kurdish Regional Government in Iraq would be an affront to Iraqi sovereignty, reports AMAY. Regional powers have been on edge since the semi-autonomous region decided to push through the referendum despite objections by the central Iraqi government. Turkey and Iran are already beating the drums of the war over it. If independence is approved by the Kurds, we may be looking at some more regional instability, as this would be the biggest shift in the region since the emergence of Daesh. Not to mention the impact this may have on global oil markets.

Japan’s Foreign Minister Taro Kono also urged Arab League nations not to allow North Korean workers into their countries, according to The Mainichi. His speech addressing the Arab League came at the first ministerial dialogue between the bloc and Japan. As we noted yesterday, Egypt announced major steps to cut ties with the DPRK.

…And speaking of the Arab League meeting of foreign ministers, we haven’t seen this many insults being lobbed since the days of Qaddaffi. Qatari Foreign Minister Sultan Al-Muraikhi took swings at countries blockading Qatar with comments that were as subtle as a sledgehammer, the NYT reports. Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry rejected the statements immediately calling them “baseless insults.”


Enterprise is available without charge — just visit our English or Arabic subscription page, depending on which edition you would like to receive. We give you just about everything you need to know about Egypt, in your inbox Sunday through Thursday before 7am CLT (8am for Arabic), and all we ask for is your name, email address and where you hang your hat during business hours.

The Macro Picture

Bond investors are following IMF reform packages: International bond market buyers are turning to high-yield emerging market bonds whose issuers are getting support from the IMF, Selcuk Gokoluk writes for Bloomberg. “The pledge of discipline and transparency that goes along with the aid has helped make” those countries the top performers outside the Americas this year, Bank of America Merrill Lynch indexes show. The list of these countries is topped by Iraq, Mongolia, Cameroon, Zambia, and Egypt.

Aaron Grehan, a fund manager at Aviva Investors, explained that “the uptick in sales from ‘less well-established’ markets means that ‘IMF involvement is even more relevant in the investment decision-making process… the presence of the IMF in countries that have demonstrated sustained economic improvement” offer the best chances of returns. Graham Stock, the head of emerging-market sovereign research in London at BlueBay Asset Management, supports Grehan’s view, saying “if we’re confident that a country is going to reach an agreement with the IMF and the policies underpinning that agreement are going to be sound, then that is a very favorable backdrop.” Stock bought Egyptian and Mongolian bonds on the strength of the Fund’s support. Allianz Global Investors had also made Egypt one of its top bond holdings after its reform program and IMF agreement.

…Emerging market debt in general is winning record inflows and strong investor demand, according to BNP Paribas’ Africa Weekly DCM Market Update. For Egypt, debt yields have fallen to record lows with the five-year bonds yielding 4.897%, dropping below 5% for the first time since issuance in January 2017. Strong post-summer secondary investor demand drove credit spreads down by 10-15 bps. Egypt’s 10- and 30-year bond yields also dropped to 5.9% and 7.3% respectively.

Image of the Day

Apple announced three iPhone models last night: The iPhone 8 and 8 Plus and an all-screen tenth-anniversary edition it’s calling iPhone X (which, yes, has no home button, and uses your face to open the device). We’re quite in love with the latter. Both the 8 and the X include new cameras, faster processors, wireless charging, glass backs, and True Tone screen tech, among other goodies. Also on the lineup were the Apple Watch Series 3, a very cool piece of kit that includes ridiculously interesting heart monitoring tech — and that will come with an electronic SIM card to allow it to make calls using your main iPhone telephone number without it being around (the only catch is that it will likely be some time before it arrives in Egypt, as it requires carrier-specific agreements). The tech maker also took the wraps off a new Apple TV set-top box that supports 4K video.

The iPhone 8 and 8 Plus will ship next week, but the iPhone X will move out to stores only on 3 November in select countries. Apple’s Egypt site says only to “check back later for availability.”

Tap here to watch last night’s keynote from the Steve Jobs Theater, which included what was, for Appleheads, an emotional opening note from the late Steve Jobs.

What’s the press saying: Verge founder Nilay Patel calls ‘em as he sees ‘em, and he was in love with the iPhone X, writing last night that even at a USD 1,000 starting point, it “feels worth it” once you have the phone in your hand. Read (and watch) his hands-on here.Hands-on tours from AppleInsider and iMore are also worth checking out. Apple shares were up as much as 1.5% during last night’s event, but closed the day down 0.4%, the Wall Street Journal reports, while the Financial Times takes on pricing and availability and the New York Times has a surprisingly solid rundown on the event with a single page of mini stories.

Egypt in the News

The alleged disappearance of the lawyer investigating the murder of Italian PhD student Giulio Regeni is dominating an otherwise very slow news day for Egypt in the foreign press this morning. Ibrahim Metwaly, who founded the Stop Enforced Disappearances group and has been representing Regeni’s family since his murder last year, was scheduled to attend a UN meeting in Geneva, the Telegraph reports. He was last heard from on Sunday morning; reports suggest he may have been arrested at Cairo International before boarding the plane to Switzerland. The AP has picked up the story.

Also getting extensive play: A report that Egypt has effectively cut ties with North Korea, as the Associated Press’ take on a piece originally by South Korea’s Yonhap news agency got wide circulation.

Elsewhere: Egypt’s bid to take part inthe reconstruction of Syria got coverage in Al Monitor. Egypt had already made a pitch for its public and private sectors to participate in Syria’s reconstruction. A delegation from the Federation of Egyptian Chambers of Commerce met with Syrian Deputy Prime Minister Walid Moallem. Moallem praised the relationship between Egypt and Syria in his interview with Syria’s state news agency, SANA. “There is a sincere desire to enhance bilateral relations between the two countries,” he said.

In other news, Amnesty International is calling on Egyptian authorities to release the 24Nubian activists arrested last week for protesting without a license for the return to their ancestral homeland.

Worth Watching

Remember the Magic School Bus? Netflix is bringing it back to life. At least a couple of us here at Enterprise are excited to watch Netflix’s remake of the Magic School Bus animated series once it graces our screens on 22 September. Not only is the familiar yellow bus getting a revamp, the intrepid Ms. Valerie Frizzle will be putting sister Fiona behind the wheel, as she takes her third-grade students on mad (scientific) adventures up to the moon, down to the bottom of the ocean, and inside the cells of the human body — all in the pursuit of knowledge. The nostalgia is especially strong with this one, for both our millennial staffers and the Gen X parents on staff, whose even-younger kids enjoyed the books. You can catch the trailer here (runtime 1:32).

Diplomacy + Foreign Trade

Egypt is expected to be forming a new “rapid response force” to battle terror in Africa under an agreement with member states of the African Union, according to Middle East Online. The force would be “deployed anywhere on the continent” and primarily work to disrupt supply routes connecting militants in central and western Africa with those up north. African defense ministers will be meeting next month to negotiate an operational budget and map out their capabilities.


GE reaches financial close for USD 250 mn substations in New Cairo

General Electric (GE) said it has reached financial close on its USD 250 mn contract with the Egyptian Electricity Transmission Company to build four substations that will connect 7 GW of power to the national grid, Daily News Egypt reports. The project, which was signed for back in July 2016, will be funded by Deutsche Bank AG and HSBC France and should come online by the end of 2018. GE has partnered with local contractor Rowad Modern Engineering to build the new Cairo substations, according to GE North East Africa President and CEO Ayman Khattab.

Germany’s KSB to be awarded pumps supply contract for West Cairo power plant

Germany’s KSB will reportedly be awarded a contract to supply the 650 MW West Cairo power plant with pumps worth c. EGP 330 mn, Cairo Electricity Production Company officials tell Al Mal. The firm is expected to ink the agreement at the end of September. The plant is expected to come online in 2019 with over EGP 6 bn in funding secured through a number of Arab financing institutions, including the Kuwaiti and Saudi development funds.

Basic Materials + Commodities

Agricultural Exports Council looks to get more companies to enforce GLOBALGAP standards

The Agricultural Exports Council is looking to have more Egyptian exporters apply the Global Good Agricultural Practices (GLOBALGAP) framework, which will enforce stronger inspection and quarantine measures on outgoing cargo, Al Mal reports. The council is in talks with companies to discuss their certification processes. The Trade Ministry had announced last month it would be imposing GLOBALGAP standards on all Egyptian exports, after a number of Arab countries issued temporary bans on products including peppers and strawberries.

Egypt to issue tenders for 1.3 mn tonnes of wheat to bolster reserves

The Egyptian government will be issuing global tenders soon to purchase around 1.3 mn tonnes of wheat to cover its needs until harvest season in mid-April next year, an unidentified Supply Ministry official tells Reuters’ Arabic service. Egypt currently has wheat reserves to last until March 2018, he adds.

GASC purchases 16,500 tonnes of sunflower oil

The General Authority for Supply Commodities(GASC) bought 16,500 tons of sunflower oil,Al Mal reports. The price came in at just shy of USD 800 a ton for a total just under USD 14 mn.

Health + Education

UAE’s The Big Heart Foundation grants USD 2 mn to healthcare projects in Egypt

The Big Heart Foundation, an Emirati humanitarian organization, is allocating a USD 2 mn grant for three healthcare projects in Egypt, which it will implement in cooperation with local bodies, Emirates news agency WAM reports with a rundown on the three projects.


Tourists’ average spending rises 7.5% y-o-y in 1H2017 to USD 88.2

Spending by the average visitor to Egypt rose by 7.5% y-o-y to USD 88.20 a day in 1H2017, Tourism Ministry officials tell Daily News Egypt. The increase was driven by a change in the tourist demographic visiting Egypt, they said, explaining that there has been an influx in visitors from Japan, China, and the Gulf recently. The central bank had announced yesterday that tourism receipts for FY2016-17 grew by 16.2% y-o-y as the result of improved tourist arrival figures between January and June 2017.

Telecoms + ICT

MNOs drafting technical framework to expand networks to administrative capital and other new projects

The National Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (NTRA) has asked telecom operators Vodafone, Orange, and Etisalat to begin preparing a technical framework and timeline for the planned expansion of their networks to cover new projects, including the new administrative capital, sources tell Al Mal.

Banking + Finance

CI Capital to increase Corplease stake to 86%

CI Capital Holding is days away from submitting an official request to the bourse to acquire an additional 14% stake in financial leasing subsidiary Corplease from the Union of French and Arab Banks (UBAF). The acquisition would bring CI Capital’s total stake in the firm up to 86%, Managing Director and Group Co-CEO Hazem Badran tells Al Mal, refusing to disclose the value of the transaction. The remaining 14% of shares will be held by Corplease Managing Director Tarek Azmy.

Egypt Politics + Economics

Private sector wages rose 12.8% in 2016 –CAPMAS

Private sector wages increased 12.8%, with the average reaching EGP 2,680 per month in 2016, up from EGP 2,376 the previous year ago, according to CAPMAS statistics cited by Al Shorouk. Average salaries in the public sector rose 8.5% y-o-y in 2016 to EGP 4,600 per month, up from EGP 4,256 in 2015. The state census bureau found that there was gender disparity in these increases, as male employees in the public and private sectors received, on average, an 8.6% bump in their monthly salaries, while the average salary for women employees actually declined 0.4%.

National Security

MiG-29 fighter jet deliveries to Egypt underway, Ka-52K contracts were not yet signed

Deliveries of Russian MiG-29 fighter jets to Egypt are already underway, Russian presidential aide for military and technical cooperation Vladimir Kozhin told TASS. “Some fighter jets have been already sent to Egypt. Given the number of aircraft – that’s around five dozens of vehicles – the supplies are expected for several years … I’m sure that we will meet the deadline on fulfilling our obligations under the contract," Kozhin said. Earlier reports noted that Egypt bought around 50 MiG-29 fighter jets that are set to be delivered by 2020. Meanwhile, it appears that the Ka-52K helicopter delivery contract was not a finalized agreement entirely, as Kozhin says “it is true, we won the tender, but that does not necessarily mean that a contract is signed instantly … I do hope this will happen soon.” Kozhin did not seem too worried about the future of the contract, saying “one should take note of our advantage over competitors, bearing in mind that the helicopters are of Russian manufacture. The Mistral ships were custom-made to accommodate our helicopters.”

Saudi, Egyptian air forces conducting joint drills next week

The Royal Saudi Air Force is conducting joint drills with the Egyptian Air Force next week, Asharq Al Awsat reports. The exercises, called Faisal 2017, will be held for the 11th year running and are part of annual training aimed at supporting cooperation and ties between the Saudi and Egyptian air forces.

On Your Way Out

The Investment and International Cooperation Ministry launched the “Fekretak Sherketak” startup initiative targeting entrepreneurs across Egypt. Teams can apply for the initiative, which is part of the Egypt Entrepreneurship program (EEP), at EFG Hermes and the UNDP are backing the initiative.

White cab drivers in Cairo are trying to mirror their ride-hailing app rivals Uber and Careem using instant messaging app WhatsApp, Al Masry Al Youm reports. A number of drivers have launched a group on the messaging app dubbed “Taxi Whats,” which works as a more rudimentary version of the ride-hailing apps, allowing clients to request a driver a half hour in advance through the group. An administrator coordinates with available drivers and forwards clients the driver’s picture and license plates numbers.

ON THIS DAY- On this day in 2015, Prime Minister Sherif Ismail began to set up his cabinet, a day after his predecessor Ibrahim Mahlab was sacked. Enterprise readers also knew about the Finance Ministry recovering nearly as much as 40 kg of gold that were stolen. Elsewhere in the world, in 1993, then-Prime Minister of Israel, Yitzhak Rabin, and the PLO leader, Yasser Arafat, have shaken hands before cheering crowds on the White House lawn in Washington, marking the signing of a Declaration of Principles for peace between the Arabs and Israelis. Also, in 1814, Francis Scott Key penned “The Star-Spangled Banner,” which became US national anthem in 1931.

The Market Yesterday

Share This Section

Powered by
Pharos Holding -

EGP / USD CBE market average: Buy 17.6143 | Sell 17.7143
EGP / USD at CIB: Buy 17.60 | Sell 17.70
EGP / USD at NBE: Buy 17.63 | Sell 17.73

EGX30 (Tuesday): 13,475 (-0.4%)
Turnover: EGP 1.2 bn (34% above the 90-day average)
EGX 30 year-to-date: +9.2%

THE MARKET ON TUESDAY: The EGX30 ended Tuesday’s session down 0.4%. CIB, the index heaviest constituent ended down 0.4%. EGX30’s top performing constituents were: Emaar Misr up 3.1%, Egyptian Resorts 1.6%, and Cairo Oils & Soap up 1.5%. Yesterday’s worst performing stocks included: Elsewedy Electric and Oriental Weavers down 2.1%, and Global Telecom down 1.6%. Market turnover was EGP 1.2 bn, and local investors were the sole net buyers.


Pharos sees Egypt balance of payments continuing to improve in FY2017-18: Egypt’s balance of payments fundamentals are expected to continue improving during FY2017-18 as the country’s petroleum deficit narrows, with production from the supergiant Zohr gas field coming online, as well as higher FDI and tourism inflows and receipts, Pharos Research says in their latest report (pdf).


WTI: USD 48.28 (+0.10%)
Brent: USD 54.27 (+0.80%)
Natural Gas (Nymex, futures prices) USD 3.00 MMBtu, (-0.07%, October 2017 contract)
Gold: USD 1,335.60 / troy ounce (+0.22%)TASI: 7,399.98 (-0.15%) (YTD: +2.63%)
ADX: 4,470.12 (+0.71%) (YTD: -1.68%)
DFM: 3,652.88 (-0.03%) (YTD: +3.46%)
KSE Weighted Index: 440.36 (-0.46%) (YTD: +15.86%)
QE: 8,471.60 (-0.71%) (YTD: -18.83%)
MSM: 5,010.68 (-0.56%) (YTD: -13.35%)
BB: 1,307.60 (-0.23%) (YTD: +7.14%)

Share This Section


13 September (Wednesday): Pharos Holding’s Egypt Banking Day event.

13 September (Wednesday): EIB MED Conference: Boosting investments in the Mediterranean Region, Cairo.

13-15 September (Wednesday-Friday): 2017 Alliance for Financial Inclusion Global Policy Forum, International Congress Center, Sharm El Sheikh.

15-18 September (Friday-Monday): Sharm Travel Market, venue TBD, Sharm El Sheikh.

18-19 September (Monday-Tuesday): Euromoney Egypt conference, venue TBD, Cairo.

19 September (Tuesday): Deadline for applications for funding under the Newton Institutional Links programme.

20-23 September (Wednesday-Saturday): 2017 Automech Formula car expo, Cairo International Convention Center, Nasr City, Cairo.

21 September (Thursday): Islamic New Year, national holiday.

22-24 September (Friday-Sunday): CairoComix Festival, AUC Tahrir Campus, Cairo.

25-27 September (Monday-Wednesday): Egypt Downstream Summit and Exhibition, Kempinski Royal Maxim Palace, Cairo.

23-25 September (Saturday-Monday): Invest In Africa Conference and Exhibitors Summit, Gala Theater Complex, Cairo.

28 September (Thursday): Central Bank of Egypt’s Monetary Policy Committee to review policy rates.

September — The House of Representatives is due to begin discussion of the proposed bankruptcy bill.

30 September-01 October (Saturday-Sunday): Techne Summit, Bibliotheca Alexandrina, Alexandria.

03 October (Tuesday): Egypt’s Emirates NBD PMI reading released.

03-05 October (Tuesday-Thursday): J.P. Morgan’s Credit and Equities Emerging Markets Conference, London, UK.

06 October (Friday): Armed Forces Day, national holiday.

11-12 October (Wednesday-Thursday): 2030 Mega Projects Conference, Nefertiti Hall, Cairo International Convention Center, Cairo.

11-13 October (Wednesday-Friday): Middle East and Africa Rail Show, Cairo International Convention Center, Cairo.

15-16 October (Sunday-Monday): The Marketing Kingdom Cairo 3 conference, Dusit Thani Lakeview Hotel, Cairo.

17 October (Tuesday): The Narrative PR Summit, Four Seasons Nile Plaza, Cairo.

18-19 October (Wednesday-Thursday): Middle East Info Security Summit, Sofitel El Gezirah, Cairo.

18-20 October (Wednesday-Friday): AfriLabs annual gathering with the theme “Future of Cities: Innovation, Spaces and Collaboration,” The French University, Cairo. Register here.

23-27 October (Monday-Friday): 29th Business and Professional Women International Congress themed “Making a Difference through Leadership and Action,” Mena House Hotel, Cairo. Register here.

06-07 November (Monday-Tuesday): Crisis Communications Conference, Four Seasons Nile Plaza Hotel, Cairo.

16 November (Thursday): Central Bank of Egypt’s Monetary Policy Committee to review policy rates.

19-21 November (Sunday-Tuesday): 11th Annual INJAZ Young Entrepreneurs Competition, Four Seasons Nile Plaza, Cairo.

26-29 November (Sunday-Wednesday): 21st Cairo ICT, Cairo International Convention Center, Nasr City, Cairo.

01 December (Friday): Prophet’s Birthday, national holiday.

03-05 December (Sunday-Tuesday): Solar-Tec, Cairo International Exhibition & Convention Centre.

03-05 December (Sunday-Tuesday): Electrix, Cairo International Exhibition & Convention Centre.

07-09 December (Thursday-Saturday): The Africa 2017 forum: “Business for Africa, Egypt and the World” Conference, Sharm El Sheikh.

08-10 December (Friday-Sunday): RiseUp Summit, Downtown Cairo.

28 December (Thursday): Central Bank of Egypt’s Monetary Policy Committee to review policy rates.

17-21 February 2018 (Wednesday-Saturday): Women For Success – Women SME’s "World of Possibilities" Conference, Cairo/Luxor.

Enterprise is a daily publication of Enterprise Ventures LLC, an Egyptian limited liability company (commercial register 83594), and a subsidiary of Inktank Communications. Summaries are intended for guidance only and are provided on an as-is basis; kindly refer to the source article in its original language prior to undertaking any action. Neither Enterprise Ventures nor its staff assume any responsibility or liability for the accuracy of the information contained in this publication, whether in the form of summaries or analysis. © 2022 Enterprise Ventures LLC.

Enterprise is available without charge thanks to the generous support of HSBC Egypt (tax ID: 204-901-715), the leading corporate and retail lender in Egypt; EFG Hermes (tax ID: 200-178-385), the leading financial services corporation in frontier emerging markets; SODIC (tax ID: 212-168-002), a leading Egyptian real estate developer; SomaBay (tax ID: 204-903-300), our Red Sea holiday partner; Infinity (tax ID: 474-939-359), the ultimate way to power cities, industries, and homes directly from nature right here in Egypt; CIRA (tax ID: 200-069-608), the leading providers of K-12 and higher level education in Egypt; Orascom Construction (tax ID: 229-988-806), the leading construction and engineering company building infrastructure in Egypt and abroad; Moharram & Partners (tax ID: 616-112-459), the leading public policy and government affairs partner; Palm Hills Developments (tax ID: 432-737-014), a leading developer of commercial and residential properties; Mashreq (tax ID: 204-898-862), the MENA region’s leading homegrown personal and digital bank; Industrial Development Group (IDG) (tax ID:266-965-253), the leading builder of industrial parks in Egypt; Hassan Allam Properties (tax ID:  553-096-567), one of Egypt’s most prominent and leading builders; and Saleh, Barsoum & Abdel Aziz (tax ID: 220-002-827), the leading audit, tax and accounting firm in Egypt.